The New York Times has an editorial today that ought to be required reading.
Advisers like Kellyanne Conway, lawmakers like Senator Lindsey Graham and the former House Speaker Paul Ryan, party apparatchiks like the Republican National Committee chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel and a whole host of Trump-friendly media personalities may not personally share the president’s views or policy aims. But their willingness to swallow some of the administration’s cruelest acts renders them complicit. Neither their reputations nor their consciences should be wiped clean.
Correct. As tempting as it is to blame Trump and such as Stephen Miller and Kirstjen Nielsen et. al. for the Trump administration’s serial indecencies — those indecencies had enablers. Border personnel, for instance, could have refused to tear apart families — and somebody should have blown the whistle on the failure to keep records the very day that the separations began.
It would be difficult to overstate the contemporary, real-time relevance of Hannah Arendt’s Eichmann in Jerusalem, her account of Eichmann’s trial and his defense that he was “just following orders” that originated way over his pay grade. No. Orders do not relieve you of moral responsibility, any more than the demands of an Invisible Wizard in the sky can relieve you of moral responsibility.
Trump is enabled by ignorance — an astonishing number of Americans appear to know nothing whatever about their own country — and, worse, uncountable failures of character. #Resist.